Blog Post #5
This semester, I have been surprised by the literacy levels of my students.
Some are able to read basic English and some are able to read more advanced English. Many of my students come from household where Spanish is spoken a majority of the time and their literacy skills have not been fully developed or supported at home. In this way, they are not able to comprehend more advanced levels of English in mathematics, something that they see often in word problems. Many students are not able to retain the vocabulary that is used throughout the curriculum and I find this problem is a result of the language "barrier" created through a lack of English support at home or at school.
September 30, 2013
My literacy-rich classroom will implement many of the strategies and activities I have learned this semester in EDSS 521. These include collaborative activities, where I pre-select certain students for groups in order to offer the most support. This can come in the form of peer teaching, where bilingual students can offer support to Spanish speaking students who struggle to comprehend the English we use in class.
They are reading and developing basic math vocabulary that will help them make it through the course. Mathematical foundations are created through minimizing complex language and grammar while focusing on conceptual understanding.
December 15, 2013
My literacy-rich classroom continues to support and scaffold students through a variety of strategies and activities (think-pair-share, brainstorming, interactive lessons, jigsaws, manipulatives, debate, etc.). My students are engaged in conceptual learning and understanding and practice their reading and writing skills.
They are reading the textbook and other resources they are given and are asked for any questions they have regarding the language, grammar, and syntax used. They are writing mathematics using standardized notation that they have learned through vocabulary retention strategies and practice.
They are discussing new concepts in groups and are given tasks to complete that promote deeper levels of understanding. Group work is normal by this time and students are used to collaborating with their peers and interacting in an academic environment.
May 30, 2014
My literacy-rich classroom has taught students all the tools they require to research and learn independently. We have gone over how to research mathematical vocabulary using reputable sources and students regularly add vocabulary words to their toolkits. Students have also had practice comprehending the word problems we have given during the course of the school year. They are now able to recognize what the word problems are asking and what mathematics they must use to solve them.
My students are engaged in research-based learning where they collaborate to research, examine, and implement mathematical concepts.
They are capable of independent learning in the following areas: vocabulary research and retention, mathematical research and practice, and self-assessment and evaluation.